I recently attended a business webinar on the science of email marketing held by Hubspot.com. You can see that here. The tools for email marketing can be found easily. Writing these emails can be a bit more difficult. When I started at Voice123 in 2007, one of the first things I did was go through the emails that were being sent to voice talent. Granted, I felt more comfortable writing to voice talent because I am one, but when it came to writing to voice seekers, I had to change gears. I wanted to go over some of the tips for writing emails for marketing purposes:
- You know they are ‘marketing’ emails, but you are describing what you are, and not trying to force yourself on anyone. You achieve this by…fasten your seat-belts…. ‘talking to people like they are people’. Woah! What a concept!
- Keep it human, always, with emails to clients. Go figure, but in the day and age when technology controls so many processes, people still strive to talk to people. Try and keep the feel of your emails this way.
- Get to the point about what you want to do. Using subject lines with a defining purpose for the email, does help it ‘get read’ more often. Emails are so polluted with spam that the last thing you want to do is read like you are spamming someone.
- If you are emailing someone to work with them on a project, make sure you have all the plans spelled out for them, so that the recipient only need say ‘Yes’ or ‘No’. I learned this a very long time ago: If you approach someone and write, ‘I have this great idea’, but have no action plan, nor a plan as to how it will benefit all parties involved, you make the reader of the email think: “Ok, so I am supposed to bring YOUR idea to life, so I pay YOU?”. Your emails should not make the reader feel, ‘You work for me now.’
- Always follow up. I love Gmail for my ability to hoard emails for years, and my ability to search for them when I think of it. Following up requires a plan. You cannot write someone with an idea, and never follow up. Following up is also the key determining factor as to why some voice talent online ‘win jobs’, while others ‘win long term contracts’. It would be great if every person remembered us when we expected them to, but not everyone has the memory to do it, so you always need to follow up to stay on people’s minds. Following up is part of building and maintaining a client list.
- Come down-to-earth into the room of the reader, when you write. Nothing screams ‘delete me’ more than an email that goes on the attack, accuses or assumes something, and worse, make demands that you deserve something for experience you have with other people. It is one of those things where you have to stop and ask, ‘Would I really say this to him/her in person?’. If you ever find yourself writing an email that does not feel like it will market you well, but you feel emotionally charged enough to write it…do so, and do not send it. The next day, read it again and see if it is worth sending.
- Do not offer up negative information. If you feel you are writing something that does not make you feel proud, you should not be sharing it. Telling people what worries you, and personal hardships, makes the reader feel guilty for not helping you. No one ‘gives jobs out of pity’. They will quickly think, ‘Wow! They have issues to handle first, before we work together.’
- People will be quicker to remember how you ‘made them feel’ before ‘what you did for them’. Emails can play a role in that process. My favorite thing at my job is answering feedback emails and helping folks. It is not fake. It is real. If that markets me, that is just a bonus. What was taking place though? Like-minded people trying to work together.
Tools for email marketing:
Each of these tools offers tips on the how, when and why of email marketing. Through it all, keep this one rule of thumb in mind: There is no substitute for great content that solves a problem fast and efficiently.